Anthropologie’s new artist

New Orleans-based painter and former Baton Rougean Sarah Ashley Longshore is making herself at home at Anthropologie. The popular clothier and home décor depot chose the 33-year-old as the inaugural artist for its new furniture concept, a line of four chairs showcasing her vivid paintings. Due in September, Ashley Longshore for Anthropologie will be featured in Anthropologie’s U.S. stores and catalog, on its Web site and in its London chains. The retailer also tapped Longshore to design packaging for a line of beauty products. The internationally known artist infuses her paintings with tongue-in-cheek humor and enough feminine charm to make the Anthropologie scouts swoon.

“To have this huge company believe in me, a self-taught artist, is really flattering,” she says.

The admiration is mutual. Longshore is a longtime “Anthro girl” who never leaves the store empty-handed. Personal fondness aside, she says the decision to collaborate was a no-brainer.

“They’re very artist-friendly,” Longshore says. “They have great respect for artists, unique ideas and thoughtful, creative innovation. As a fine artist, you have to be careful going mainstream because you don’t want to lessen your fine art. I felt that Anthropologie didn’t lessen what I was doing at all.”

Longshore is at work on Spring 2010 furniture designs for Anthropologie, and her paintings can be seen in three upcoming films, including Final Destination: Death Trip, in theaters next month. ashleylongshore.com